Viewing Javad Larijani’s speech at the Universal Periodic Review is not easy to do – Iran’s Human Rights chief filled his speech with self-righteousness, generalizations and justifications coming off as if there are no human rights problems in Iran…at all.
Watching it three times in succession maked it easier to understand: Larijani’s speech is just too good to be true and he is simply lying.
Lie after lie after lie…
Here are a few of Larijani’s best lines:
- Larijani: Iran continues to “fully participate” for the “promotion and protection of human rights”.
Iran24/07: Iran promotes human rights? Iran was ranked 167th with a 36% average by the International Human Rights Rank Indicator in 2013 – Iran still has a long way to go!
- Larijani: Since the last report, Iran has “constantly worked for further promotion and protection of human rights”.
Iran24/07: Constantly worked? Since its last UPR, Iran received 212 recommendations, accepted 126 (59%) and implemented only 5 (2%)…in 4 years!
- Larijani: “The will of the people shall be the basis of authority of the government”.
Iran 24/07: The will of the people? How about the will of the people who elected three political leaders (Mousavi, Karroubi and Rahnavard) who are still under house arrest after 4 years?!
- Larijani: Tehran “genuinely and meaningfully” involves its citizens “without any discrimination of any kind”.
Iran 24/07: Without any discrimination? The regime systematically discriminates on the basis of gender (in sports stadiums, municipality offices…), religion (over 300 individuals in prison because of their religion), age (girls married at the age of 9), sexual orientation (capital punishment for gays) etc…
- Larijani: Baha’is enjoy all the possibilities/privileges of Iranian citizens.
Iran 24/07: Bahai’s enjoy rights? Bahai’s, like Christians and Kurds are treated like Iranians as long as they do not preach their faith and ideals – once they do that, they are systematically persecuted by the states and vigilantes for trumped charges of espionage!
- Larijani: Iran creates and maintains the “necessary measures for the protection of the rights of the vulnerable groups” (especially women and children).
Iran 24/07: Protecting women? The latest spree of acid attacks for “bad hijab” were sparked by a law, passed in the Iranian parliament to enforce “enjoining good and forbidding wrong” by empowering civilian vigilantes!
- Larijani: There are no forced legal marriages of children in Iran.
Iran 24/07: No forced marriages? The legal age for marriage in Iran is 13 but girls as young as 9 can be married with permission from a court –Does Larijani want us to believe that all the 40,635 brides under 15 (including 1,537 under 10) married between March 2012 and March 2013 really consent to their marriages?!
- Larijani: Iran adheres to a full separation of powers (executive, legislature, judiciary).
Iran 24/07: Full separation? The IRGC which is the real basis of power in Iran is active in all three allowing the IRGC the power to circumvent the law repeatedly just as they did with Mousavi, Karroubi and Rahnavard!
- Larijani: All Iranian nationals are “equal before the law”, “have the right to choose their own lawyers” and can count on “the presumption of innocence”.
Iran 24/07: Rights to lawyers and innocent until proven guilty? Ask Jason Rezaian, a WaPo reporter, or Goncheh Gavami, a women’s rights activist – both were picked up and thrown into solitary confinement with limited access to their lawyers on trumped-up charges of espionage…and are still in jail!
- Larijani: Iran prohibits the use of torture and arbitrary arrest.
Iran 24/07: No torture or arbitrary arrests? Just google “Iran torture” to get an idea – people still get nabbed from their houses/offices and are thrown into jails where they are treated to abuse, beatings, rape and torture – Reyhaneh Jabbari herself was thrown into solitary confinement and tortured in an effort to get her to confess!
- Larijani: Iran has “continuously worked for the promotion of human rights ” (with the UN).
Iran 24/07: Working with the UN? Ahmed Shaheed, the UN’s special rapporteur for human rights in Iran has not been allowed into Iran since taking office in 2011 because of accusations by Iran that his reports were unfair and political…Is that how Iran “cooperates” with the UN?!
- Larijani: The imposition of (unjustified and unfair) sanctions in Iran has created obstacles to human rights.
Iran 24/07: Unjustified and unfair? The responsibility for the sanctions lie wholly on Iran’s continuous strategy of evasion, lies, lack of transparency and non-adherence to IAEA policies and requests in its nuclear program including denying access to IAEA inspectors until today!
- Larijani: Iran “adheres to renouncement of all forms of violence” and calls for unity in “combatting all forms of terrorism and extremism”.
Iran 24/07: Renouncing violence and battling terrorism? When Larijani, like other Iranian leaders talk about fighting terrorism they conveniently “forget” that Iran supports state-sanctioned terrorism through its Qods forces and proxy terrorist organizations (Hezbollah and others) in Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Yemen and other countries!
What to expect? More lies…
Larijani and all the top leaders in the regime understand the rules of the game well: when in trouble, lie, conceal and gain time.
Larijani can say whatever he likes because he knows that nobody can really check up on him – especially since he banned the Shaheed from entering Iran.
And in a way, this method of lying and concealing resonates through all the interactions between the regime and the rest of the world in the fields of human rights, nuclear programs, military operations, terrorism etc…
Lie, conceal and gain time.